Date of Award

5-2010

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Education (MSEd)

Department

Physical Education

First Advisor

Dr. Luis Columna

Second Advisor

Dr. John Foley

Third Advisor

Dr. JoEllen Bailey

Abstract

A collaborative effort between parents and teachers may assist in enhancing the quality of the instruction and services for children with autism in physical education (PE) settings. However, there is a paucity of research exploring parental perceptions of PE/APE teachers and programs for their children with autism. The purpose of this study was to validate an instrument in order to assess parental perceptions toward adapted physical education (APE) teachers and programs. Participants included two expert panels, one to assess content validity of the survey (n = 5), and another to assess item content relevance of survey questions (n = 8). Additional participants (n = 11) were parents of children and youth with autism aged 6-20 currently enrolled in APE or General Physical Education (GPE) through their school districts. The Parental Perceptions Toward APE Teachers (PPTAPET) survey was developed using a multi- step approach and a Likert Scale design where parents rated their level of satisfaction regarding communication with APE teachers, qualifications of APE teachers, and rapport with the APE teacher. The culling down of the PPTAPET was done by way of a correlational pair wise matrix and Delphi Method. Lastly α coefficients and split half reliability of the survey were determined. Based on the α coefficients for each of the three subscales it was concluded that the PPTAPET survey had high internal validity. Each subscale on the PPTAPET survey possessed high α values of .89, .89, and .92 respectively. Split half reliability of the scale was determined by the Spearman Brown Prophecy coefficient and determined r” = .90. In conclusion preliminary evidence for validity and reliability of the PPTAPET was acceptable and demonstrated the survey may be a useful tool in assessing parental perceptions of their child's APE program and teacher.

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